I went to bed early last night after a very pleasant day which included seeing Harry at his new job at Merriewold Country Club. We took him and his co-worker/friend Matt to dinner in Monticello and were home by 7:30.
I tried to watch The Time Traveler's Wife with Marty, but it didn't hold my interest. I was tired, so I took my ambien and went up to bed.
For some reason I became teary and sad. I started reliving my life since that awful day in 2006 when I was told I had leukemia. I focused on every hospitalization,every chemotherapy, every set-back, every small victory and all the anxiety that coursed through my body.
I also thought about how I learned that I was a much-loved person. This was remarkable to me and still is. It made everything bearable, but also more depressing because if I died, these people would feel bad. I owed it to everyone to stay alive.
One trick I learned during my hospitalizations was to mind-travel to Playa Gringo, a beautiful slice of white sandy beach lapped by warm turquoise water reachable only by kayak. I'd only been there once but it's the place I want o return to and build a house perched on the cliff above. I've even designed the house in my mind. The night my heart started beating rapidly (200 beats/minute) and I developed arrhythmia, I had to go to Play Gringa to escape the scary activity in my room. The doctor on call kept saying I wasn't going to die, but I felt like I might. She told me she was going to infuse a medication that would feel like I'm drinking 100 cups of coffee at once. It felt more like a jolt of electricity straight to the heart and it didn't feel good. Hello Death. They did it a second time, and i drifted off to Playa Gringa once more.
I survived that incident, just like the doctor said I would. I was probably closer to death years earlier when I'd had a 105.9 fever due to an infection in my catheter.
Eventually, I fell asleep. Who wants to relive six years of illness? No one. But sometimes the horror pries itself into consciousness and and snuffs out the good things that have happened, are happening and are soon to happen.